After more than a decade of internal conflict, characterized by widespread torture and extrajudicial killings, the Himalayan nation of Nepal finally emerged as a democratic republic in 2008. The country’s tumultuous conflict was brought to a formal end by the ratification of a 2006 peace agreement between insurgent groups and the government. Yet, human rights abuses are still commonplace. While these abuses are widespread across the country, cases continue to be especially prevalent in Terai, a region in southern Nepal, where the government has dispatched large numbers of police in response to unrest.
In 2014, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) began to implement a program that fosters accountability for human rights abuses in Terai. We are working with grassroots civil society organizations to create a sustainable network of local human rights defenders to accurately identify and document human rights abuses in the region. Additionally, we will work with local doctors and medical professionals to accurately record medical evidence of torture.